The Hard Business Problems Facing U.S. Law Faculty

U.S. Legal Education is in the midst of a large, structural transformation. This structural shift is driven by a confluence of factors, which includes three significant trends:

  1. The decline, or plateau, of the traditional time and materials legal services model
  2. The politics of law school finance
  3. A new generation of legal entrepreneurs that are turning some aspects of law into process‐driven products and services.

The trends above are going to require law schools to change. In what way? We can lower our cost structure, but that would only address some of the challenges. The only viable strategy is to retool. This entails rethinking what we teach and how we teach so that the value of the legal education‐‐for students, employers, alumni and the public at large‐‐is commensurate with our operating costs.

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